Bridge trust deficit with Nepal: Congress to Modi  


New Delhi, Sep 30 (IANS) Terming the present impasse with Nepal as “partial failure” by India in practising good diplomacy, the Congress on Wednesday called upon Prime Minister Narendra Modi to take urgent steps to bridge the “trust deficit” with the Himalayan nation.

Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi told reporters here that relations between India and Nepal have always been deep and cordial.

“In this context, the Congress thinks that it is extremely unfortunate, sad and gravely detrimental to national interest of both countries to see what is happening in the current context in Nepal. We have to unfortunately say that it also reflects a partial failure of what should have been good Indian diplomacy,” he said.

Referring to protests in Nepal and the blockade of supplies on the border, he said “spillover of this angst and dissatisfaction is good for neither country”.

“We call upon the government to show the requisite diplomatic finesse and certainty to deal with such serious issues which are of vital strategic importance to the two countries,” Singhvi said.

“This is the state of affairs despite two visits by no less than the Indian prime minister to that country in the short span of one year apart from several visits by both the foreign minister and the foreign secretary,” Singhvi added.

The Madhesi parties from the Terai region in Nepal have been protesting at the border entry points with India to build pressure on the Nepalese government to meet their demands for amending the new constitution.

They maintain that the Terai-based people and ethnic groups fail to find adequate representation in the country’s new constitution that was promulgated on September 20.

Singhvi said the Madhesis and the Janjatis (tribals) believe that their point of view has been ignored in the new constitution.

He said appeals for fair play for these segments from within Nepal and from India were being misunderstood.

“We view with dismay the developing trust deficit. The prime minister must take urgent concrete steps,” he said.

He said there was virtual cessation of dialogue with Pakistan and the prime minister should pay urgent attention to relationship with the neighbours.


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